Sunday, September 30, 2012

Street Art: Two behind the Crislip Arcade

Work by Jennifer Kosharek and Christian Thomas

These two are legal. They are in the alley behind the Crislip Arcade, and should be seen in person. One can drive right to them, just make sure you're going the right way (which is towards downtown). The first one is the ubiquitous Distressed Damsel, the one and only Ms. Gretchen, this time where she can be seen by all. It was a collaboration between Crislip Arcade Eve N' Odd gallery owner Jennifer Kosharek and Christian Thomas, who has several legal murals all over St. Pete. Both have been reviewed here several time in their own right.

I was present when this one was started on a hot evening. We see Miss Gretchen, looking uncertain and more than a little sad. She shelters her brood (the two owls and the Mini-Gretchen). There's three faces above her on the left who look sad. Note the return of Mr. Spoon Man looking properly Rasputin-esque behind Ms. G.

Right around the corner from the above mural is a new one painted by Rebekah Eugenia Lazzaridis, of the Eugenia Woods gallery, also in the Crislip Arcade. Titled "Only a Paper Moon", it is a (paper) moon suspended on what appears to be a silk ribbon above stormy waters whose waves look a little like angel wings.
It is in a natural frame (a blocked-out window?) inset.

Congratulations to Jennifer Kosharek, Christian Thomas, Rebekah Eugenia Lazzaridis for highly individuated murals, and to Gary Burnside for making all this possible.

--- Luis

Put a Lid on It: The Art of the Box @ Florida Craftsmen Gallery

Helene Bess, "Eye Candy"
This show makes art out of what everyone talks about escaping at one time or another: The Box. In this case, literally. There are eleven artists in the show: Richard Chill Cott, Virginia Spalter, Helene Bess, Wesley Allen, Julie Dye, Samantha Churchill, Susan Bach, Sue Monde, Mark Noll, James Oleson and Steve Cinnamon. Too many artists and works for this article, but here are some picks.

Helene Bess' "Eye Candy", above left, and to the left here, is a mixed-media work that looks like a cross between an altar piece and a jewelry box. Accompanying the piece is a statement about how "the beauty of appearances" can be a veil or a window to the greater reality beyond.  On the left is a picture of the exterior which exemplifies the statement.

Mark Noll, "Red, Yellow, Orange and Blue Boxes

There was a series of small, well-crafted (and very reasonably priced) wooden boxes from Mark Noll. Beautifully designed and proportioned, a little oriental-looking and projecting physically into space, which is unusual for boxes. Most of the time they're focused on containment and being hermetic. The projections from the axis give them a sense of time.

Mark Noll, "Take Out"

Mark Noll also had this work (and others not shown) titled "Take Out", a hand-made, humorous pop-icon Chinese restaurant take out box, complete with a fortune-cookie on top.

Samantha Churchill is a Tampa artist, muse and mover known for her aluminum wire sculptures and Dia de Los Muertos paintings. She had several works in the show. Several small wire sculptures in clear plastic boxes that were hand-stitched.

Samantha Churchill, "The Collector"

The centerpiece was a larger sculpture, a duet of figures, one a large aluminum wire sculpture trying to corral a smaller copper wire figure into a box. Titled "The Collector", its narrative speaks volumes to the artist/collector relationship, as well as many others in life.

Julie Dye, "Cubed Cube"

Works in white by Julie Dye

Julie Dye had several paper works in the show. Cubed Cube, shown at left, is but one example. The lighting on it was beautiful. The idea of multiples and multiple projections worked well.

Virginia Spalter had several exquisite boxes on display. This one, "A Tangled Web", is a mixed-media piece with a glass handle. Sleek, beautiful and elegant. What it holds is creative energy.

 Congratulations to all the artists and to Florida Craftsmen Gallery for a good theme and a memorable show.

--- Luis

Saturday, September 29, 2012

First Visit: The Box on 5th, show #3.

The Box on 5th is a stand-alone boxy white building next to a grassy parking lot on 5th Ave in Ybor City that has been converted into an art gallery.

This was its third show and my first visit to this art space. It was co-curated by Tracy Midulla Reller, who chose the artists, Mitzi Gordon of Bluebird Bus fame, who chose the works, and Vince Kral hung them. More on him later. Here are a few photographs from that opening night, just first impressions.

Work above is by Zesch Fallon, abstract acrylic on raw canvas

                                                  George Anderton, acrylic on canvas

                                                    Anthony Record, ink drawing

                                              George Anderton, mixed media on paper

In the middle of the space is a long counter on which select books from the Bluebird Bus were offered for sale.

Congratulations to all the artists, Tracy Midulla Reller, Mitzi Gordon and the owner of the building for a memorable show. The Box on 5th shows a lot of promise. I look forward to their next show, which will be Vince Kral's first solo show. It opens on October 5th.

--- Luis

Friday, September 28, 2012

Seen: Reduceds @ Tempus Projects

In 2005, Kurt Piazza created a fundraiser for the Gulf Coast Museum of Art, coupling emerging artists in a museum setting with a maximum $500 price to encourage young professionals to become emerging collectors. Tempus partnered with the [5]art artists to continue this tradition, and this was their fifth REDUCED show.

This makes for a very eclectic show, save for a black-and-white theme. Here are a few highlights...

Eli Neuboren, "3 Window Shuttle"

Eli Neuboren's "3 Window Shuttle" is a giclee print depicting what appears to be an airplane window in a sequence of three, with the views  changing in each one. Surrounding the windows is what appears to be a geographical map. The effect is that of seeing through and looking at each aspect simultaneously.

Leslie Elsasser, "Manifest Destiny Series"

This gouache, glitter, metallic pigment work on watercolor paper by Leslie Elsasser, titled "Manifest Destiny" is particularly difficult to reproduce in a photo, but this gives some idea of what it looks like. A rising sun-like orb stretches out to the lateral edges of the frame, with organic forms rising and falling in layers. A very calming, meditative piece.

Becky Flanders, "Silphium Stalk 2"

 The work on the left is fairly small, but exquisite. Perhaps 5x7 inches, "Silphium Stalk 2" seems like an abstraction at first glance. It is not. Silphium was a highly valued plant that grew in a limited environment in the N. coast of Africa. Animals grown where they could graze on it were highly valued for what the plant's resin did to the meat. Becky told me at the opening that for her, the plant's value as birth control was very important. So much so that it image was put on coins, and supposedly it was worth its weight in silver. Perhaps due to the high demand by the Romans, this strain appears to have gone extinct.

Silphium stalk on Cyrenean coin from North Africa when it was part of the Roman Empire.

Congratulations to all the artists and Tracy Midulla Reller, Director of Tempus, for a good show.

--- Luis

The Truth is Too Convoluted @ C. Emerson Fine Arts

Kim Anderson, "Reflex"

C. Emerson Fine Arts' The Truth is Too Convoluted show features  Kim Anderson and Caui Lofgren, a well-known pair of artists from Bradenton. Both of them teach, she at New College, he at a Bradenton school.

Kim Anderson, "Ritual"

Kim Anderson takes old snapshots, movies and movie frames and paints from them. Camera stills in general and snaphosts in particular depict time in very thin slices. When viewing our own photographs we have back and fore stories on either side of the image. This provides a temporal context as well as that concerned with the constellation of facts about what is within the frame. When these things are removed, the image changes, even more so when transduced into a painting.

With film stills, this isolation brings in the in-between moments, as opposed to the usual highlights that tend to be photographed or moments contrived/posed by photographers and models alike. Things are revealed that even an astute-eyed observer might miss. Buoyant when freed from their referents or their memory, they become like bits of messenger RNA, strange attractants to confabulation, imagination, and the viewer's own memory.

Kim Anderson, cels from animation titled "Salome"

On top of all this is the inescapable feel of nostalgia in these pictures and the human fantasy and longing for a paradaisical earlier time. This is always with us in art, but is currently enjoying a resurgence in figurative and landscape work.

Kim Anderson, "Salome"
A lot of artists experiment, flirt or flit with art in a variety of dimensions, usually progressing from 2D to 3D and 4D. In this show is an animation short by Ms. Anderson. The entire sequence of drawings is displayed (see illustration above) while it plays in a video loop in a frame just to the right of it. Unlike most movies, this one benefits greatly from the inexact registry.The little staccato jumps in the frames raise questions about the our perception of time as a seamless sequence and quanta of time. It is a brilliant conceptual piece.

Caui Lofgren, "Owl"

Caui Lofgren plays with pop icons via sectioning and rejoining them, generating chimeras from the distortions and new symmetries. He leaves just enough of the original that we know conceptually what the original looks like That tension between vision and the mind's eye becomes a wellspring of new associations.

Congratulations to Kim and Caui and to Lori Johns and C. Emerson Fine Arts for a good show.

--- Luis

Thursday, September 27, 2012

This Looper Weekend, Sept 28th-30th.

A Dozen Dali works on Loan @ The Dali Museum - Starting Monday, Oct 1st, twelve works on loan from the Museo Nacional centro de Arte Reina Sofia will be on display at the Dali. Runs through March 31st 2013 (assuming the apocalypse doesn't happen). All at 1 Dali Boulevard, St. Petersburg. Check here for details [Link]. Not free.

The Enchanted Garden of the Goddess - Thirty Gulfport artists put on an enchanted evening in the perfect small beach town for it. Sculpture Garden, live Goddesses, and more. Artists' Alley, 5437 29th ave. S. Gulfport. From 6-11 PM Saturday Sept 29th. $15 admission

Mi Grito de Yara - Another exhibit from the Artists of the Oriente and East Cuba Cultural Exchange, with two new artists brought in. Thirty new paintings will be shown. All at Niance Galleries, 804 S. Mc Dill, Tampa. Free admision.

RAS + E @ 620 - The show is titled Re: Visit and Re: Print. Elizabeth Herrman and Ryan Shelley show their collaborative work. Opens Friday, Sept 28th, 6-8 PM. Free admission. On Sat., Sept 29th, there will be a workshop on their printing methods (which they call the "post-print design world". from 12-4 PM at a costof $40.00.

Kerry Vosler @ TECO Public Art Gallery - This traditional portraitist will be showing from Monday, Oct 1st to Oct 4th. At 702 N. Franklin St. Tampa. Free Admission.

National Museum Day, Sat. Sept 29th. Free admission! You must go to the Smithsonian site at [Link] and get and print out your ticket and show it at the gate.

Chilhuly Collection - For Florida residents only. 400 Beach Drive NE., St. Pete

Creative Clay - 1124 Central Ave., St. Pete.

Dali Museum - 1 Dali Blvd, St. Pete.

Leepa Rattner Museum of Art - 600 Klosterman Rd. Tarpon Springs

Museum of Fine Arts  -   255 Beach Drive NE. St Pete

Morean Art Center - 719 Central Ave St. Pete.

Ringling Museum of Art - 5401 Bayshore Road, Sarasota

Florida Museum of Photographic Arts - 200 N. Ashley Tampa

 Polk Museum of Art - 800 E. Palmetto St Lakeland.

Agent Provocateur: Alan Hampton/MLKKK Reloaded on CL

In today's Creative Loafing, Megan Voeller has an excellent article titled "Whitewash" on the controversy I wrote about sixteen days ago here [Link]. The photograph illustrating the article (seen below) is one of many I took as the painting was being covered by Allen.

I donated that picture to Creative Loafing to illustrate Megan's article because I think she does a great job writing about the arts, I understand what Allen is doing with his work and was doing with MLKKK, and that it deserves to be seen and talked about. Art does not exist in a bubble. Deliberate, contrived controversial art like Allen Hampton's is designed to stir people up, and in truth, also stir up publicity. As Mae West said:  "I don't care what the newspapers say about me as long as they spell my name right."

Allen Leper Hampton

I urge everyone within range to visit this exhibit, take their friends, or get them to go, look very, very closely at the entire exhibit, form their own conclusions and talk about it. Congratulations to Megan Voeller on a well-written piece.

 --- Luis

PS. Apologies to Allen Hampton and Mark Wior for misspelling their names in my original article. This was corrected as soon as it was pointed out to me.

Street Art: Mayan God and an Eye

These two may be legal, but I'm not sure, so I'll leave out where they are, which is a little out of the way, though people, hundreds of them, walk by them every day.

Looks like a Maya deity with a big heart.Rainbow colored plumage and a green face to go with it. This is bigger than the size of a man.

Right next to the work above sits this Eye-I..."See do", perhaps imploring the viewer to act.

---- Luis

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

FMoPA Class Schedule

Saturday, October 6, 2012 at 2:00pm
 Basic Camera Operation (formerly Brown Bag I)
Sunday, October 7, 2012 at 11:00am

"The Civil War Era Photographer's Art"
Sunday, October 7, 2012 at 12:30pm
Saturday, October 13, 2012 at 2:00pm

Basic Composition (formerly Brown Bag II) 2 Sessions
Begins Sunday, October 14, 2012 at 11:00am

Sunday, October 14, 2012 at 1:00pm

Thursday, October 18, 2012 at 7:00pm

 Thursday, October 18, 2012 at 7:00pm

Saturday, October 20, 2012 at 10:00am

"Mario Algaze: A Poetry of Light"
Sunday, October 21, 2012 at3:00pm

Sunday, October 28, 2012 at 1:00pm

Tuesday, October 30, 2012 at 7:00pm 

Eclectica & Ken Tolces @ Duncan McClellan Glass

The current show at Duncan McClellan Glass consists of works in glass, mostly from Murano, and some images made via marquetry (cut slices of wood). It is curated by Ken Tolces, CEO of Joseph Wright Imports, LLC, an import company with a connection to Murano and representing some of its great artists in the USA.

I had the privilege of walking through the show with Ken, an illuminating experience regarding the techniques of glass and maquetry and the appreciation of these works.

Gianluca Vidal, "Miraggi 02"

Gianluca Vidal  is a Master glass artist from Murano who has worked with many of the greats, including Afro Celotto, Sylvano Murin, Luciano Pavanello, Giancarlo Tagliapietra and Dino Vio. Vidal was nicknamed "Crema" for his ability to work glass and give it creamy qualities. "Miraggi 02" is handblown Murano glass, sculpted on a diamond wheel, using murrine [Link] filigrana [Link] and other techniques. A thing like this requires a large number of steps, all of which must be previsualized, executed perfectly and in specific steps.. On the right, a close-up to illustrate the incredibly rich complexity of this piece.

Gianluca Vidal

 Here is another work by Vidal, also blown Murano glass sculpted on a diamond wheel. This one is very different, transparent, unrestrained, more expansive into the surrounding space. Titled "Dioniso 24", it gives the feeling of forms emerging and falling, like the angels on Jacob's Ladder.

click this image to view full screen / greater detail

Kalman Radvanyi is a marquetry artist. The work on the left is completely made from thin slices of wood. His father was a furniture maker. His mother took him to see great architecture, which he would later draw. Now he says he "...paints with wood.". The precision in the way these veneer pieces are joined, their colors and tones, and the perspective are amazing. Kalman is now using precious stones as part of the inlays. On the left is "Jerusalem Castle". Note the red and white Moorish Arch reminiscent of the Alhambra overhead, and the Star of David on the floor.

"Santa Ana, Wind and Water Series", by Shayna Lieb, is a wild piece, made of pulled, cut and shaped glass canes, hundreds of them. On the left is a close-up showing the details of the canes and their opulent colors. On the right is the complete work, which is about 2 ft tall. It looks alive, like a sea anemone or spring grass.

On the left is "L'Amazon", by Silvio Vigliaturo, made of fused glass. Looking a little Cubist, this Amazon wears a crown, looks on one eye shut. She's whimsical, but not smiling...
Vigliaturo is considered a master of glass fusion.

This jewel-like cube, filled with prismatic glimmers of light,
consists of a myriad of glass cubes cut from the original, and glued back together. It is a decorative object of extraordinary beauty. As one moves about, some points dim and others turn on, or change colors.

Work by Gianluca Vidal (close-up)

Congratulations to all the artists, Ken Tolces for curating and bringing in these works, and Duncan McCLellan and his crew for a very good show.

--- Luis

Monday, September 24, 2012

War of Art @ Dysfunctional Grace

Erin Zisser

Erin Zisser has a punk-influenced line of jewelry which she describes as "...some grit with your glamour...". There are spiked bracelets, neon necklaces, skulls and more in her coals and diamond line of jewelry and Glassphemy Design.

For this show at Dysfunctional Grace, Zisser invited 20 artists, including Amber Lakos * Bill Woo * Brandon Marsholl * Cassandra Melena * Christian Thomas * Collin Gow * Daniel James * Derek Donnelly * James Rise * Jenipher Chandley * Jennifer Kosharek * Joe Boccia * Joe Lemire * Johnny Vitale * Josh (Zen Glass) * Justin Shearer * Kristi Capone * Matt Deterior * Melissa Bruneau * Rasta * Reid Jenkins * Ryan Rosas * Sean Williams * Sebastian Coolidge * Twin Culbertson * Victoria Arendt * & Zulu Painter.

The designs were submitted by participating artists and transferred onto the shell casings. Photographing these proved difficult, as I had to hold them with one hand and the camera in the other. Here are a few of the pieces....

 Jenipher Chandley

Matt Deterior

 Ryan Rojas

Derek Donnelly
Sebastian Coolidge

Victoria Arendt

Christian Thomas

Reid Jenkins

Liz Furlong on the right


Liz Furlong and her daughter at the show.

Jewelry made and modeled by Erin Zisser

People voted with shell casings (no hanging chads here) for their favorite, and Derek Donnelly won. I will be writing a separate article on this soon. Congratulations to all the artists, Erin Zisser, Liz and Dysfunctional Grace for a good show.

--- Luis